Iota Sigma Chapter Receives Prestigious Key Award

On November 15, 2005, Azusa Pacific University’s Iota Sigma Chapter of the Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) nursing honor society was honored with the STTI Chapter Key Award at the 38th Biennial Convention of STTI in Indianapolis, Indiana. APU’s own Kathleen Taylor, Iota Sigma president; Marilyn Klakovich, Iota Sigma president-elect; Cathy McPhee, Iota Sigma immediate past president; and Emma Perkins, undergraduate student leadership intern, were all present to accept the award.

The Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) Chapter Key Award, established in 1991, honors chapters that excel in activities such as membership involvement and retention, publicity and programming, and professional and leadership development. Chapter Key Award judges’ comments on Iota Sigma’s submission included, “Congratulations on earning a key award! It is evident from the time and care put into this entry as well as all met criteria that Iota Sigma is a chapter that cares for its members. Your chapter obviously works hard and succeeds in striving for excellence.” Only 27 of the 430 chapters received Chapter Key Awards in 2005.

The idea of applying for the Chapter Key Award started with strategic planning initiated during the presidency of Leslie Van Dover (2000-02), chair of the Graduate Nursing Program. She noted that, “from this meeting and the ones that followed annually, emerged written plans that used creative thinking and harnessed the energy from every member of our board toward being the most effective chapter possible.”

In addition to receiving the award, Iota Sigma members were among the approximately 2,000 nurses from around the world who participated in the 38th Biennial Convention. Klakovich and fellow APU School of Nursing faculty member, Anna Heffner, were among the many presenters. Perkins met and interacted with a variety of participants, including representatives from the Russian Nurses Association and Vietnam veterans who helped design the nurse's memorial in Washington, DC. Klakovich and Taylor represented Iota Sigma in the House of Delegates, and Taylor was elected as the Region 2 coordinator, which covers Southern California, Arizona, New Mexico, western Texas, and Australia. "The STTI 38th Biennium was an incredible experience. It was exciting to interact and find common ground with the more than 2,000 nurses representing 4 generations of nursing from around the globe despite our different levels of technology. Being elected as the Region 2 coordinator is a big responsibility that can only be met with God's guidance and grace,” said Taylor.

In spring 2006, Iota Sigma will be holding its 19th annual induction, and for the first time will be inducting members from the new Second Careers and Nursing (S.C.A.N.) Program and the PhD in Nursing Program, along with students in the BSN, MSN, and CAPS programs, and community nurse leaders.

For more information about either Iota Sigma or STTI, visit and